Monday, February 21, 2011

Radio interview at Basil magazine...

In another attempt to spread the word about local and seasonal foods, I had asked Basil Magazine to allow me a few minutes to discuss this on their online radio show. The Hostess Chef Jennifer Booker interviewed me this evening, asking questions pertaining to what projects I am working on, where I work, the challenges of writing a seasonal menu and more.

It was awesome to be able to chat with Chef Booker. What a perfect medium to get the word out! In addition to plugging my employer, we discussed lowering our carbon footprint by buying local, the nutritional value of foods that are very fresh as well as the excitement of using products that are fresh and grown or made with passion. Of course, we discussed the two schools I'm currently working with with the "Chefs Move to Schools" program.

Check out the interview here. Thank you for listening!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Winter Cooking Demo at Pinewood Elementary

As we are slowly making our way out of winter and into spring, I've been asked to return to Pinewood Elementary and talk to a few 4th grade classes today about eating locally and seasonally.

For this demonstration, I brought a farm box from Barbee Farms that had the items that they have in season right now that I can make a salad with.

The demo began with a review of what we learned last time. It was awesome to see hands fly up to discuss Basil Pesto and Pasta. Most of the students even remembered my full name! Was great.

As we progressed, I opened my box of goodies and discussed the lettuces and vegetables I brought. Red and green leaf lettuces, arugula, mesclun mix, carrots and more. I brought some citrus and some balsamic vinaigrette to make a seasonal dressing and, of course, a few cool gadgets to show off.

We discussed the nutritional value of eating fresher, local foods that are in season. Also, informing that, once the vegetables are picked, they lose vitamins and minerals and the sooner they are eaten, the better. This is one good reason to eat from your area farms as the stuff is coming out of the ground.

A film crew from the local health department was there to film my demo as well as a photographer taking pictures. They submitted their film to a government web site and sent me a DVD of the video and all the pictures. Very cool, helping to spread the word!

Before we all left, the film crew and I visited the 4th graders garden sites where the new spring garden will be going in a few short weeks. We are all very excited to grow stuff and I'm SUPER excited to show the students how to create healthy meals with their new food items.

Coming up, we will tour a local farm and I will create a healthy dish using those ingredients grown at the farm.

Check out the video below!